Morocco reports six-fold spike in foreign filming
Feb. 28, 2015
TANGIERS, Morocco (AP) — Morocco saw a six-fold increase in the amount of money foreign film companies spent in the country to make movies, the head of the film commission said Saturday.
On the final day of the National Film Festival in Tangiers, Sarim Fassi-Fihri said that 38 foreign productions had spent a record $120 million in 2014.
The figure is more than the last five years put together. Foreign film companies spent only $22 million in 2013.
Fassi-Fihri attributed the increase to the presence of experienced film crews and stable politics.
"For the Middle East region, we are practically the only one that can guarantee peace and stability," he said, explaining that film companies are avoiding the rest of the region.
Morocco's largest filming operation in 2014 was "Mission: Impossible 5," which at one point closed a major highway between Marrakech and Agadir for weeks during the shoot. The next biggest was NBC's 12-episode biblical series "A.D. The Bible Continues."
Morocco's mountains and deserts have frequently been used as backdrops for modern Middle East thrillers and biblical epics.
Scenes for "American Sniper" and "Spectre," the next James Bond film, were also filmed in Morocco.